Most couples when they separate are able to agree on a temporary parenting arrangement. Sometimes, however, this is not possible, and the court needs to get involved in a parenting time dispute early in the case. When no emergency exists, a court oftentimes will enter a temporary custody order that reflects the parties’ prior practice with respect to parenting time. When parties do not have a preexisting arrangement, a court will typically require a reasonable amount of parenting time for the non-custodial parent, provided no extenuating circumstances exist. Courts, however, will not typically make significant changes to a preexisting parenting arrangement on a temporary basis absent a compelling reason to do so. In these types of matters, consulting with an experienced Chicago family law attorney is a good idea.
A wide range of conduct can constitute an emergency. An emergency is a serious issue concerning a child that cannot wait for the completion of normal motion practice. Emergencies can include, for example, attending special family events, medical issues, enrollment in certain activities, and a wide range of safety issues. A mistake people oftentimes make is knowing that deadline is approaching and waiting to the last minute to address the issue. Courts are reluctant to find an emergency exists when the party claiming an emergency knew about the issue for an extended period of time.
A special type of emergency arises when one parent believes that the other parent poses a serious threat to the child. If a parent believes that the other parent is physically abusing, sexually abusing, or creating other serious dangers for the child, that parent may want to have a supervised visitation order entered on an emergency basis. To have a court order supervised visitation, a party has to show that the child is facing serious endangerment. Showing serious endangerment is a heavy burden, but it is not an impossible burden. If you believe that your child is the victim of physical or sexual abuse or is facing some other serious danger, you have every right to present your concerns to a court. A key part of this process is getting the evidence organized and presented to the court in a clear and cogent manner.
A temporary order is an order entered while a divorce or paternity action is pending. The temporary order will get replaced by a final custody and parenting time order at the conclusion of the case. Even parties that can work together on parenting issues may want a temporary parenting order simply to prevent future disputes and to have a clear schedule. In these types of situations, the parties oftentimes will enter an agreed order that sets forth the temporary parenting plan.
Not all parents are able to agree on a temporary parenting schedule. In those situations, the court will have to enter a temporary parenting schedule over the objection of one or both parents. When entering a temporary parenting order, the court is going to start from the premise that both parents have a right to have parenting time with their children. If the parties had an arrangement in the past, the court will typically start its analysis from that arrangement. A court is not trying to resolve the parenting time issues in a temporary order, and such orders are oftentimes changed during the litigation to reflect new information or special circumstances.
All of the following important notes apply to temporary custody orders:
The Law Offices of George M. Sanders, P.C. in Chicago can help clients like you resolve their child custody concerns, and we’re committed to helping you reach a positive outcome. For more information, please don’t wait to reach out and contact us today.